Monday 8th April
Another mixed day of sunshine and heavy rain.
We left the Woody Head campsite and drove into nearby Iluka to seek out the Post Office. To explain the reason for the visit I need to go back to a post two weeks ago. I mentioned then that I had tried to contact my cousin Ripley – Rip – whom I have not seen for around 40 years. I had left my calling card at the diving company he once owned. As a result he called and we spoke on Saturday night and have arranged to meet in May. During the conversation he mentioned another cousin neither of us has seen for 50 years. He thought the cousin lived at Iluka. It was then I recalled another conversation with another cousin, who mentioned that Graeme A, had moved to Iluka many years ago and all contact has been lost. Therefore I went to the Post Office to ask the staff if he is known to them. He is! I left a calling card with them to drop into his mailbox.
As we got closer to Brisbane, naturally the traffic became heavier and from one lane we soon found ourselves on the Freeway with anything up to 6 lanes of traffic all rushing headlong to somewhere. By mid-afternoon we arrived at Fairfield to begin our familiarization of our house-sit. The owners leave early Thursday morning and were busily organizing packing.
Tuesday 9th April
Mike and Joan packed their cars and headed off to load their caravan which is kept in a storage area a few klms away. We moved WWWGO down the long narrow driveway into the carport. Whew! The driveway is narrow and the overhead clearance was marginal, measureable in millimetres!
We started to unpack and move things into the house, visited the local shopping centre and a doctor visit for me including the annual flu injection. We took the opportunity to walk around several of the nearby streets and look at some of the older houses including a number of beautifully maintained and or restored Queenslander houses. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queenslander_(architecture) )
Wednesday 10th April
While Donnis learned about the interior house duties I filled in my day differently. First there was a visit to the doctor for an annual blood test, then a referral to an Ear Nose Throat specialist, then made contact with the specialist and made an appointment for two weeks hence. A trip to the nearest railway station and we each now have GO Passes enabling us to use trains, buses and ferries around Brisbane. Then it was off to Centrelink to claim some rental assistance and finally a visit to a local RSL Club in search of an Advocate who will assist in preparing a Veterans Affairs claim. Mike and Joan finished packing their caravan and hitched the Ford F250 so it will be ready to leave early in the morning.
As a reward for being busy Mike and Joan shouted take away Thai food for dinner.
Thursday 11th April
Mike and Joan left this morning and we drove their car back from somewhere near Forest Lake. The GPS came in handy but not until it recognised the way I wanted to go rather than the way it wanted me to go.
Within our first two hours alone we were visited by a snake in the next bedroom. I believe it was a tree snake as it was whip thin with bulging eyes but with the colouring of a brown snake. Regardless I managed to sweep it into our washing hamper and released it at the back gate. It seems the snake may have been living in the wardrobe for quite some time judging by the trail of poo along one wall and inside the wardrobe. We took everything out of the wardrobe, vacuumed and opened all cases and put them back just to be sure there are no other surprises waiting for us.
Friday 12th April
Donnis celebrated her …th birthday today. The day was overcast with rain threatening all day and we experienced a few heavy showers later in the night. We drove to the home of Peter, Regelyn and grandson Chris
It was a good opportunity to catch up with everybody and Peter treated us all to a pizza dinner at a restaurant located in a piazza at Hyperdome Shopping Town. Earlier in the day I had suggested we buy tickets to the Cowboys Vs Broncos Rugby League game at Suncorp Stadium tonight. It’s probably a good thing we did not get tickets. It rained and although those are our favourites teams we prefer the Cowboys. The Cowboys lost.
Saturday 13th April
The rain became heavier overnight and worse during the morning.
Peter, Regelyn and Chris arrived in time for lunch of my signature dish…Chilli Con Carne with Red Kidney Beans. Peter had two servings and commented how much he enjoyed the meal. Regelyn reminded him he hates red kidney beans. They stayed to watch a movie as the rain continued outside.
Late in the afternoon I developed a nose bleed. Regular readers will no doubt recall the issues I have had with nose bleeds over the last few years. I had thought after the last specialist visit the bleeds would no longer be an issue.
Sunday 14th April
We woke to brilliant sunshine.
The morning was spent just relaxing much as we have spent the first week in our new surroundings and getting used to the huge space of a home once more. Next week should see us getting out and about a bit more and doing the exploring we enjoy so much. After lunch we went for a drive into the city and as we drove we watched the weather deteriorate to heavy overcast and 90% humidity. On our way home we took a wrong turn and found the notorious…Boggo Road Gaol. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boggo_Road_Gaol
Yes, that is the correct English spelling, GAOL not the American version, JAIL. The gaol has been closed since 2002 although guided tours and ghost tours are conducted here. It was closed when we visited and although there is not much to see from outside the high brick walls, barbed wire, bars and gates and guard towers are still imposing and chilling in the daylight.
The CO-PILOT was not interested in looking inside as just a walk around the outside walls was depressing for her. Sunday markets are held in the park like grounds surrounding the gaol. By a strange co-incidence we saw a small documentary about Boggo Road Gaol on the TV this evening